Cutting-down Guam's spoiled ballot count - News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

Cutting-down Guam's spoiled ballot count

by Mindy Aguon

Guam - Aside from certifying the results, the members of the Guam Election Commission's board of directors during their meeting Tuesday evening will be going over other numbers, such as why there was such a high number of cross over votes.    

"I really don't know what to say," shared John Blas.  "I know the GEC used a lot of press releases and also our friends with the media to convey message of not crossing-over."

The executive director of the Guam Election Commission says its hard for him to comprehend how there could have been more than 4,000 spoiled ballots from Saturday's Primary Election for Decision 2010.  He says perhaps he could do a better job with training precinct officials, noting, "The only thing I can do when we conduct seminars, I did spend a lot of time at seminars.  I must do a much better job and emphasize the importance of not crossing over in the Primary."

Although crossover votes won't be an issue in the General Election, former GEC board member Ron McNinch does feel the issue should be evaluated to prevent it from happening in future elections.  "In general, the GEC needs to look at these spoiled ballots and get feedback on why people spoiled their ballots and find out why they spoiled them and try to make-up measures in the future to stop the ballots from being spoiled," he said.

Senator Adolpho Palacios, who has oversight over the GEC, is also concerned about the crossover votes, as well as voter turnout.  He's written to the GEC, requesting to hold an informational briefing. Specifically the Democrat lawmaker would like to discuss the extent and nature of the commission's public awareness and voter education efforts, information on spoiled ballots by precinct if feasible, chief causes of spoiled ballots and what can be learned which will assist the commission in the General Election.

A date for the informational briefing has not been scheduled.

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